close search

January 2015

Nixie Machine by Frank Buchwald

German artist Frank Buchwald designed this stunning Nixie tube clock in collaboration with MB&F’s M.A.D.Gallery (which is their Geneva based boutique which carries not just watches, but art and other high-end merchandise for those whose pocket books are deep). The Nixie Machine is the best looking Nixie tube clock we’ve ever seen, and unfortunately it is priced higher than any clock of its kind. We have found much more accessible Nixie Tube clocks, like this one, but none as good looking as this. The six tubes are arranged in pairs: one for hours, one for minute and one for seconds (or day, month, year). The beautiful glowing tubes are displayed on top of a burnished steel and brass structure, that MB&F refers to as a “retro-futuristic design.” The Nixie tubes (Z568M) were originally manufacture by RFT is East Germany in

Read More »

Hands-On with Greubel Forsey Art Piece 1

High-end timepieces are often compared to artwork, due to the nature of their creation, namely that fact that components require the hands of a skilled artisan to craft, finish, and sometimes the dials even feature miniature paintings (called enamel-work). Not to mention that timepiece at this level are sold in limited quantities. Well, Greubel Forsey took this idea a step further with Art Piece 1, a very limited series of watches featuring art work from a nano-sculpture artist Williard Wigan set right inside the timepiece. In a recent discussion with brand co-founder Stephen Forsey, he told PROFESSIONAL WATCHES that in order to properly view the nano-sculpture, which is the size of a need pin head, they had to manufacture a special lens system small enough to fit inside the crown, yet sharp enough to properly magnify the sculpture. The result

Read More »

Introducing the new Lange 1

Since its original debut in 1994, the Lange 1 has been the most iconic watch from German watchmaker A. Lange & Söhne. Fast forward to 2015, and the line now consists of 15 models, with complications ranging from moon phase indication to world time zone to tourbillon. Yet, with all these new designs, the first one still stands above the rest. And so, while the movement and bezel have been redesigned this year, everything has stayed the same. The biggest changes happened to the movement, in fact, the only visible modification apart from the new caliber, is a slight narrowed bezel. The signature asymmetrical dial is now a little more open. The Lange 1 comes in the same 38.5 mm by 9.8 mm case and is available in the same case/dial combinations: (Ref. 191.021) yellow gold/champagne, (Ref. 191.032) pink gold/argenté

Read More »

Harmony Ultra-Thin Grande Complication Chronograph

Last week at the Salon international de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH), Vacheron Constantin launched the all-new Harmony collection, featuring cushion shape cases inspired by one of the brand’s first wristwatch chronograph from 1928. The collection, produced as an homage to the brand’s 260th anniversary, consists of seven limited edition models. Today, we will cover the most exclusive of the references – the Harmony Ultra-Thin Grande Complication Chronograph. The world’s thinnest self-winding split-seconds chronograph. The watch is presented in a 950 platinum case measuring 42 mm by 52 mm, and just 8.4 mm thick. A see-through caseback shows off the newly developed in-house caliber 3500 which is just 5.2 mm thick and features a unique gold peripheral rotor, hand engraved with a dedicated 260th anniversary pattern. The rotor design allows a full view of the movement, like you get with a

Read More »

Breitling announces new monopusher manufacture movement

Yesterday, Breitling announced a new monopusher chronograph, called the Transocean 1915, which pays homage to the brand’s history as one of the first companies to offer a wrist chronograph. “The founder’s son, Gaston Breitling, came up with the ingenious idea of ensuring a clearer separation of functions by creating a pushpiece independent of the crown to control the three chronograph operations. Keen to ensure smooth, ergonomic handling, he chose to place the pushpiece at 2 o’clock, where the thumb or forefinger naturally rests, whether the watch is on the wrist or held in the palm of the hand,” according to Breitling. To produce a chronograph that operates from a single pushpiece Breiling developed a new hand-wound manufacture movement, the Breitling caliber B14. It is ingeniously equipped with a two-tiered double column-wheel system that allows it to control start/stop and reset

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

Lange launches the Datograph Up/Down in pink gold

Jason Pitsch

The Datograph Up/Down was launched in platinum in 2011, just before its official debut at SIHH 2012, and we were in Dresden covering the launch. The Datograph is Lange’s flagship chronograph, along with the Double Split, Datograph Perpetual and 1815 Chrono, which all have a variant of the sublime manual wind column-wheel equipped, vertical clutch, flyback and precise jumping minute counter chronograph (caliber L951.6) that animates the Datograph Up/Down. It is considered by many, myself included, to be the best chronograph movement on the market. And now, it is available with a black dial made of solid silver and housed inside an 18K pink gold case (same dimensions as before at 41 mm by 13.1 mm). The luminous baton hour and minute hands are in pink gold, as are the chronograph seconds hand, baton-shaped hour markers, outsized date aperture, the

Read More »

Vacheron Constantin Métiers d’Art Arca

At SIHH 2015 this week, Vacheron Constantin revealed the first Métiers d’Art Arca table clock from the 12 piece series they will produce and progressively unveil throughout the year. Each piece will be unique. Four will utilize rock crystals, and the other eight will use translucent crystals, which are all sought out and meticulously hand selected based on specific clarity and quality requirements. While each crystal will be unique, all 12 clocks will use the same, new Vacheron Constantin movement comprising a constant-force mechanism and a 30-day power reserve. Interestingly, Vacheron Constantin states that the Arca, is the result of a collaboration between stone-hunters and stone-cutters, guillocheurs, engravers and enamelists.

Read More »

Montblanc Heritage Chronométrie Dual Time

The Montblanc Heritage Chronométrie Dual Time bears a strong resemblance to the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Home Time. Everything from the dial layout to the case dimensions to the way the watch functions. Montblanc states that they developed their own module for the watch but with so many similarities, it is almost a given that Jaeger-Lecoultre played a hand in its development. The fully polished steel case measures 41 mm by 9.97 mm. The dial is silvery white with a sunburst pattern, facetted indexes, Arabic numeral “12” as rhodium-plated appliqués, rhodium-plated sword-shaped hour-hand and minute-hand, blued steel hour-hand for the second time zone, the 24-hour and the day-night indicators, rhodium-plated small seconds, and date window at 3 o’clock. The crown is steel and features the Montblanc emblem in raised relief. The local time is displayed via the silver hour hand. The home

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

Frederique Constant previews new Worldtimer Manufacture

Jason Pitsch

At the other watch show, Baselworld, which takes place from March 19th to March 26th, Frederique Constant will debut a new version of their popular Worldtimer Manufacture. The new Manufacture Worldtimer is animated by the same great (caliber FC-718) automatic movement that was developed completely in-house at the Frederique Constant manufacture in Plan-les-Ouates in Geneva, and that we have which we’ve previously reviewed. The same round 42 mm by 12.1 mm highly polished 3-piece steel case with convex sapphire and see-through caseback. And the same easy to use functionality. The Worldtimer function can be used by selecting the desired city and placing it at the 12 o’clock position on the dial. Once the internal discs are synchronized, you will can read the time in any of the 24 time zones. Furthermore, these discs also indicate if it’s the day, with

Read More »

Luminor Submersible 1950 Carbotech 3 Days Automatic

This week at SIHH 2015, Panerai debuted a new professional diver watch, the Luminor Submersible 1950 Carbotech, which is differentiated by its composite carbon fiber material case. Often it is hard to determine the benefits of one composite material over another. In this case, Panerai describes their (trademarked, not patented) material as having a matte black appearance, which varies according to the cutting of the material, resulting in each piece being unique. It does not seem a whole lot different than the composite carbon material Richard Mille is using, called NTPT (and for which they have a registered trademark), other than visually. And while the term “composite carbon fiber” is ambiguous, I think the main point is that it is meant to be lightweight and strong, similar to ceramic, titanium or forged carbon, without the disadvantages of forged carbon (used

Read More »